1) Later this month, I will ordain three men to the diocesan priesthood: Deacons Anthony Leo Cecil, Jr., Steven James Reeves, and Kirby Brecklyn Rust. The ordination will take place on Saturday, May 25, 11:00 a.m. at the Cathedral of the Assumption in Louisville. Please consider joining me at this joyful celebration for our local Church.
2) You may have seen news about the Holy See’s release last week of the Motu Proprio Vos estis lux mundi that deals with sexual abuse by clergy. Many of its elements mirror policies already in place in the United States due to our Charter for the Protection of Children and Young People. These include outreach to victims, the obligation to observe all civil laws, including reporting laws, the right to report abuse, the guarantee of an objective and thorough investigation, and the assurance of lay involvement.
Some ask what has changed for dioceses in the United States. There are two main areas: bishop accountability and the role of the metropolitan bishop. The Motu Proprio requires a clear mechanism for reporting a bishop or religious superior who has committed or covered up sexual abuse. It also tasks metropolitan archbishops with the responsibility of investigating such reports after the Holy See issues a mandate giving the metropolitan bishop permission to conduct an investigation. (A metropolitan bishop is the archbishop in each of the Church’s provinces; the Archdiocese of Louisville is in the Province of Louisville and includes the seven dioceses in Kentucky and Tennessee.)
These new elements will be discussed at the Bishops’ meeting in June, and I will share final conclusions when they are ready. For more information about the Motu Proprio, click here.